Sources of uncertainty and their assessment in spatial mapping ETC/ACC Technical Paper 2008/20

09 Apr 2009

Iulian Petchesi

Robust mapping methodologies (linear regression with subsequent kriging, making a priori use of observational data) are developed and tested for the best quality spatial assessment of a number of directive related air pollutants, with focus on ozone and PM10, for both policy support and information to the public. The maps are used to assess European wide exposure and the resulting health effects at a resolution that provides ‘background’ pollutant concentrations.

Provided with these maps are also maps of uncertainty. These are limited in their extent and do not explicitly include a number of other sources of the uncertainty. This report outlines and to some extent deals with other possible sources of uncertainty in the air quality maps.

To define and improve the uncertainty assessment carried out in the mapping activities of the ETC/ACC. This will also hopefully lead to improvement in the assessment itself. Initially this document will list all possible relevant sources of uncertainty and the limitations of the methodologies used to assess these. It will then propose a number of possible improvements in the methodology needed to assess these sources of uncertainty and methods for including these in the uncertainty mapping methodology. Conclusions will then be made and recommendations for implementation and further work will be given.

Prepared by: ETC/ACC members Bruce Denby1, Frank de Leeuw2, Peter de Smet2, Jan Horálek3
1Norwegian Institute of Air Research (NILU), Oslo, Norway,
2Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL), Bilthoven, Netherlands,
3Czech Hydrometeorological Institute (CHMI), Praha, Czech Republic

Published by: ETC/ACC, April 2009, 29 pp.

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